YOU NEED TO FOLLOW: THE AIDS MEMORIAL on INSTAGRAM…

the_aids_memorial: The AIDS Memorial Preserving the cultural legacy of the AIDS crisis so that future generations can study & engage. Please Follow & Share your thoughts for Remembrance.

I started following the_aids_memorial a few months ago. It’s great to see amazing people who are no longer with us… celebrated, respected and remembered. It really brings context to all the mindless (yet enjoyable) bearded shirtless guys, vintage collections and cute animals that I look at all day. Lovely seeing people you never knew about or totally forgot about. The comments are frequently positive with thoughts and stories about the subjects. Starting today there are including posts of the people killed in Orlando. I’ve included a random selection here to give you an idea of the beauty of this site.

There’s so much LOVE here, please join!

The mother of a Philadelphia teenager who was among the 49 people killed in the Florida nightclub attack says she was on the phone with her wounded daughter as she cowered in a bathroom stall hiding from the shooter. #AkyraMurray was in Orlando with her family, celebrating her graduation from West Catholic Preparatory High School. Natalie Murray says Akyra sent a text message at 2 a.m. on Sunday, pleading for her parents to pick her up from the nightclub because there had been a shooting. Moments later, Akyra called her mother screaming, saying she was losing a lot of blood. The 18-year-old was an honors student who graduated third in her class last week. She was headed to Mercyhurst College in Erie on a full basketball scholarship. #PrayForOrlando #RIP 🙏

A photo posted by The AIDS Memorial (@the_aids_memorial) on

‘Eight months in the life of Robert Thomas’ ©Paul Merideth Photography “When I first met Robert in August of 1990, he was still relatively healthy and strong. He was 41. He had eight months left. Robert, who had made a good living selling real estate, was a detail person. He settled his financial affairs, arranged a living will, and purchased a vault for himself at #RosehillCemetery. He labeled the drawers of his dresser so that when he became too weak to care for himself, the volunteers would know not to put his socks in his underwear drawer. As his condition worsened he seemed to relish smaller and smaller things: a poem read to him by a friend; the smell of the air in spring, his last. For some residents, #BonaventureHouse is their only home, and its community their only family. Robert was one of these. His closest living relative, a sister somewhere in the south whom he loved very much, never came to visit him. She has two kids. She was afraid. He never complained. She sent a beautiful bouquet of flowers when he died” #aids #hiv #hivpositive #hivawareness #AMFAR #hiv #hivaids #aidsactivist #hivpositive #lgbthistory #queerlivesmatter

A photo posted by The AIDS Memorial (@the_aids_memorial) on

#robertlatoureaux (3 June1986) was born on August 10, 1940 in #StLouis #Missouri as Robert Earl LaTurno. He was an #Americanactor best known for his role of #Cowboy, in the original #OffBroadway production and #1970 film version of #TheBoysintheBand. After the film version of The Boys in the Band was released La Tourneaux’s career declined. In an interview several years after the 1970 release of the film he claimed that all doors in Hollywood had remained closed to him. “I was too closely identified with homosexuality, with ‘Boys in the Band,’ ” he said. “I was typecast as a gay hustler, and it was an image I couldn’t shake.” The only movie roles he managed to land were bits in a few low-budget pictures made in Europe. His only other film performances were a supporting part in the #RogerCorman film #VonRichthofenandBrown (#1971) and the independent film #Pilgrimage. He also had a small role in a #1974 made-for-television version of the #MaximGorky play Enemies. On stage, #LaTourneaux appeared in a small role in a Broadway revival of The #MerchantofVenice; he was slated to appear in the #1977 #Broadway production of #TennesseeWilliams’ #VieuxCarré, but was dropped from the cast prior to the show’s opening. Unable to secure work as an actor La Tourneaux began nude modeling in gay men’s magazines. He became a prostitute. and worked in a male porno theater in Manhattan, doing a one-man cabaret act between showings of X-rated films. He said he still believed he could beat the “curse” of his famous gay role and work “straight.” But that didn’t happen. In 1983, La Tourneaux was arrested for assault after trying to extract money from a client and was incarcerated at the #RikersIsland prison. While in prison, La Torneaux attempted suicide. In the early 1980s, La Tourneaux contracted #AIDS, and received news coverage when he sought legal channels to prevent being evicted from his apartment when his landlord objected to the presence of a live-in caregiver. La Tourneaux won the court case, but died in #MetropolitanHospital on June 3, 1986. Boys co-star #CliffGorman and his wife cared for him during his illness until his death.

A video posted by The AIDS Memorial (@the_aids_memorial) on

#jacquesdebascher (1951–1989) was an affluent French quasi-aristocrat. In the early ’70s, de Bascher became the darling of the Parisian fashion scene and the object of #KarlLagerfeld’s affection. Then, the It boy began an affair with #YvesSaintLaurent in 1973, fueling the rivalry between the two influential designers. #jacquesdebascherll died of complications from #AIDS in 1989 at 37. He was an infamous character who looked like a thirties movie star, dressed like a nineteenth-century dandy, and was kept by Lagerfeld, whom he called Mein Kaiser, though the two never lived together and, according to Lagerfeld, were never sexually intimate. He says it was “amour absolu, detached from all the problems—money, family, physical relationship—that can ruin a relationship.” Once, when Lagerfeld gave an eighteenth-century ball, Jacques came as the #RialtoBridge. Another time Jacques was officially engaged by a cardinal to the equally wild #DianedeBeauvauCraon (whose grandmother was an Italian princess), at a medieval Vatican ceremony still accorded certain members of Italian nobility. Lagerfeld gave her a full-length black ermine cape from #Fendi for the occasion and assumed he would take care of the “eight kids they announced they would have,” but Jacques and Diane lost interest after the visit to the Vatican was over. Jacques would brag about his weird aristocratic ancestors (among them #GillesdeRais, a companion-in-arms of Joan of Arc known for torturing little boys and girls). He would throw wild parties where drugs abounded, and would drift easily back and forth between the #Lagerfeld and #SaintLaurent camps. Many found him utterly charming, others unsavory and creepy. “He was the wildest person in the West,” says Lagerfeld, “but this was like a double life—a kind of Mr. Hyde and Dr. Jekyll, and I had nothing to do with that. If I had had the same kind of life I wouldn’t be here anymore, because he died from that.” #lgbthistory #actup #hiv #aids #hivawareness #lgbthistory #lgbt #hivpositive #hivaids #aidsresearch #aidsprevention #ignorancekills #aidsresearch #hivaids

A video posted by The AIDS Memorial (@the_aids_memorial) on

#ChristopherGillis (February 26, 1951 in #Montreal – August 7, 1993 in New York City) was a #choreographer and a longtime leading dancer with the #PaulTaylorDanceCompany, died at his home in #Manhattan. He was 42. The cause was #AIDS. Mr. Gillis was a prototypical Taylor dancer, with a compact body and a boyishly serious manner through which a glint of humor often showed. #AnnaKisselgoff, the chief dance critic of The New York Times, wrote of Mr. Gillis’s “serene muscularity full of nuance, unassuming wit and acute rhythmic training” in a review of his 1990 “Curbs and Corridors.” She continued, “In his stage personality, he captures an inner reality, an interior brooding, behind a striking physical bravura.” Mr. Gillis was born in Montreal to the Olympic skiers #GeneGillis and #RhonaWurtele. He began his dance training in 1972 with two American modern-dance choreographers, May O’Donnell and #NormanWalker. He also studied with Mr. Taylor, #FinisJhung and #CindiGreen. He joined the Taylor company in 1976. Among his major roles in the company were the detective in Mr. Taylor’s version of “Le Sacre du Printemps” and leading parts in “Profiles,” “Arden Court” and “Speaking in Tongues.” Abstract Yet Emotional Mr. Gillis also performed with his sister, the Montreal choreographer and dancer #MargieGillis, and with the companies of Miss O’Donnell and #JoseLimon. Mr. Gillis became a prolific choreographer, showing his first dances in the early 1980’s, initially independently and later as part of the Taylor company’s repertory. He created 21 works, to music ranging from Mozart to the songs of Dionne Warwick. His last piece, “Landscape,” was a solo meditation on death. Ms. Gillis performed it at the #JoyceTheater. Mr. Gillis seldom told stories in his dances, which tended to be relatively abstract with undercurrents of emotion. “I try to do movement right from the emotions,” he said in 1990, when his choreography was presented at the Next Wave Festival at the #BrooklynAcademyofMusic.

A photo posted by The AIDS Memorial (@the_aids_memorial) on

#MaryJaneRathbun (December 22, 1922 – April 10, 1999), popularly known as #BrownieMary, was an American medical cannabis activist. As a hospital volunteer at #SanFranciscoGeneralHospital, she became known for illegally baking and distributing cannabis brownies to #AIDS patients. Her relationship with the gay community began in the early 1970s. Her 22-year-old daughter died in a car accident, her marriage was long since over, and in her loneliness, she befriended a young gay man in the Castro. She began to bake and distribute pot brownies in the Castro as a way to make money, but the work evolved into activism. She campaigned on the local, state and national level to legalize marijuana for medicinal purposes. She baked the brownies in the small kitchen of her home in a housing project for the elderly in the largely gay #Castroneighborhood. She called them ”original recipe brownies” and ”magically delicious.” In one raid on her home in 1981, the police confiscated 54 dozen of them, along with more than 18 pounds of the marijuana, donated by growers. She was arrested three times and was ordered to perform hundreds of hours of community service, which she spent with AIDS patients. Her base of operations in the early years of the #AIDSepidemic was #SanFranciscoGeneralHospital. Working as a volunteer for some 10 years, she devoted untold hours to help care for ”her kids,” as the patients came to be known. Her role as a baker was but a small part of her activities. She became a San Francisco fixture for whom the city fathers proclaimed an official #BrownieMaryDay in 1992 to honor her work with dying patients in the AIDS ward. Her campaigns and arrests helped build support for the 1996 California State initiative that made the use of marijuana conditionally legal. The measure allowed use with a doctor’s consent for patients suffering from AIDS, cancer and certain other serious conditions whose symptoms are said to be alleviated by the drug. Rathbun often appeared in public wearing polyester pantsuits, and she was said to have a “sailor’s mouth. Philosophically, she considered herself an anarchist and an atheist. #aidsactivist #heroine

A photo posted by The AIDS Memorial (@the_aids_memorial) on

#Repost @joemacdonaldsupermodel ・・・ Back story by #DavidHockney “My first friend of mine to die was #JoeMacDonald. I always went to see him when I was in New York. He was the first person I knew to become ill with #Aids, just after 1981. We’d just done Parade, Les Mamelles de Tiresias and L’Enfant et les Sortileges at the #MetropolitanOpera, in February 1981. While I was working on it in #NewYork, from late 1979 on, I saw quite a lot of Joe. Then I started on the #Stravinsky triple bill, which opened at the Metropolitan Opera in December 1981. Then I left New York to go back to California. I used to ring Joe up every two or three days and chat with him and he used to ring me. One day I rang and there was no reply; I assumed he’d gone away. Eventually his mother called me and said that he was in hospital with #pneumonia. I thought, pneumonia’s not that serious, it’s a curable thing. Now if somebody mentions pneumonia I dread it. Joe got worse and I went to see him a lot; I brought him to come and stay in California for a while and I could see he was ill, very ill. When he returned to New York, I kept going to see him. I last saw him about four days before he died. His mother had rung and said he was worse. It was horrible. In hospital they made you put on masks and rubber gloves and said we shouldn’t touch him and I thought, God, poor Joe, all his friends, he’s not even seeing their faces; if he’s dying wouldn’t it be best just to see a face of a friend? He made jokes, he said he’d had a good time. Joe, when he died, looked like a 90-year-old man. He’d lost most of his hair and his face was very sunken in, almost like a skull. He knew then, the last time I saw him, that he was very close to death and yet he said he’d had a good time, which I thought was typical of Joe. He liked to have a good time. At one point earlier, about six months before, he’d said he felt guilty about things, his life. I said, I wouldn’t do that, Joe, you shouldn’t think like that, make the best of it while you can” #joemacdonald died #April1982 #supermodel #vintage #polaroid #fireisland #artcollector #newyork #thesaint #hivaids #hivawareness #aidsresearch #actup #amfar

A photo posted by The AIDS Memorial (@the_aids_memorial) on

#RonRichardson (January 27, 1952 – April 5, 1995) was an #American actor and #operaticbaritone. Richardson won a #TonyAward in 1985 for his performance as Jim in the #Broadway musical “Big River: the Adventures of Huckleberry Finn,” died at #LawrenceHospital in #Bronxville, N.Y. He was 43 and lived in #MountVernon, N.Y. The cause was #AIDS. He toured in “Big River,” in 1988 playing his role in Japan, with a Japanese cast. He sang in English but spoke his lines in Japanese, learning the dialogue phonetically, with the help of a Japanese coach. Mr. Richardson was born in #WestPhiladelphia on Jan. 27, 1952. His father was a laborer in the meat-packing industry and his mother operated a beauty parlor in their home for more than 30 years. From the age of 4, he sang in a neighborhood church; he went from high school choirs to performances in dinner theater musicals, taking time to study voice and music composition. In the early 1970’s he appeared in and around Philadelphia in “Showboat,” “Camelot” and “Man of La Mancha.” When he was 25, he played “Sportin’ Life” in the Houston Grand Opera production of “Porgy and Bess.”

A photo posted by The AIDS Memorial (@the_aids_memorial) on

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Switch to our mobile site